Invite to take part in Human Rights Day

Amnesty International Haywards Heath Group and St Wilfrid’s Church in the town are co-hosting a human rights event to coincide with United Nations Human Rights day.

The global human rights day takes place on Monday, December 10.

On Sunday, December 9, between 10.40am until 11.15am, and on the Monday between 9.30am until 5pm, in the Church Hall in St Wilfrid’s Way there will be a letter writing event for townspeople to give support to Azza Suleiman, whose human rights and freedoms have been denied by the new Egyptian authorities.

Azza, 49, is fighting for justice after Egyptian soldiers viciously attacked her while she attended a large protest near Tahrir Square in Cairo, in December 2011. Azza was beaten unconscious, leaving her with a fractured skull.

Letters for other prisoners of conscience will also be completed.

Everyone is invited and will be able to send postcards containing a message of support to Azza and a letter of appeal to President Morsi of Egypt.

Every year Amnesty International holds a Write for Rights campaign during November and December, where thousands of messages of support are sent to men women and children, whose rights have been abused.

Letters are also sent to the authorities to call for the protection and redress of those people’s basic rights.

Irene Balls, local Amnesty spokesperson said: “It shows the authorities that Azza is not alone and that all over the world thousands of people are standing up for her.”

Ray Smith, Rector of St Wilfrid’s said: “Sending a message of solidarity to those whose rights are being abused and also to the authorities on that person’s behalf is a powerful action, which shows that they have not been forgotten.”

The attack on Azza occurred when, with other protesters, she tried to help a young woman who was being beaten and stripped of her clothes by a group of soldiers.

Egyptian women’s rights campaigner Azza was knocked to the ground and severely beaten with the assault continuing after she lost consciousness.

She lodged a formal complaint with the Egyptian authorities. However they have yet to hold anyone to account for the attack and Azza is still waiting for justice.

Write for Rights is the world’s biggest global movement taking action to demand justice, respect and protection for human rights and an end to human rights violations.

Human Rights Day celebrates human rights, highlights a specific issue, and advocates for the full enjoyment of all human rights by everyone everywhere.

This year, the spotlight is on the rights of all people to make their voices heard in public life and be included in political decision-making.

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